MASH Report (2/4/16) – Bookmark Edition

• In my December 10th MASH article, I ran Rob Arthur’s projected days missed for hitters. Commentor jfee noted:

the total batter injury days projects out unrealistically low.
Projected days lost to injury – 2700
Days lost last year – 7643
Days lost prev year – 6015
Days lost year 3 – 5391

I can understand why player turnover would lead to the difference in actual injury from last year to yr3. But projecting that these same players will, next year, become so so healthy seems to involve PED’s (or perhaps a baseline injury rate – regression intercept – that hasn’t been included)

I finally found some time to look into the question and he was right. Using just linear regression and the inputs to the equation, I came up with the formula which set a min of 10 days missed per player:

Total DL days = 4.8 + .26 * age + 0.1 * DL Days in Year -1 + 0.03 * DL Days in Year -2 + 0.02 * DL Days in Year -3

Besides the age and constant, the other three numbers were close to Rob’s numbers:

Days missed this year = .18*(days missed last year) + .1*(days missed two years prior) + .02*(days missed three years prior) + .004*Player’s Age

I contacted Rob on the discrepancy and he stated the equation was missing the variable: +17.128 days. Since the two formulas look at different variables (total days vs. DL days), I decided to update the spreadsheet and include both values.

• Christian Losciale asked me the following question on Tommy John surgeries:

In this Hardball Times piece, the return times he states are included. I decided to look a little further to see how often a pitcher reaches 650 IP after having Tommy John surgery and here are the results

Tommy John Surgery Success Rates for MLB Pitchers
Season Count 2nd TJS 2nd TJS Chance Threw again Makes back to Majors Over 650 IP Returnees who reach 650 IP
2000 24 3 12.5% 18 75.0% 2 11.1%
2001 22 6 27.3% 19 86.4% 3 15.8%
2002 28 4 14.3% 22 78.6% 4 18.2%
2003 37 6 16.2% 34 91.9% 4 11.8%
2004 28 4 14.3% 26 92.9% 0 0.0%
2005 37 10 27.0% 29 78.4% 2 6.9%
2006 35 8 22.9% 28 80.0% 1 3.6%
2007 43 3 7.0% 38 88.4% 4 10.5%
2008 29 3 10.3% 24 82.8% 4 16.7%
2009 37 6 16.2% 30 81.1% 3 10.0%
2010 37 5 13.5% 31 83.8% 1 3.2%
Overall 357 58 16.2% 299 83.8% 28 9.4%

This is only MLB pitchers, but the rate of pitchers reaching 650 IP is only around 10%. His basic 2016 TJS chances probably start around 6%. Truthfully, it is tough to tell with so many different variables, but each seems to be pointing to a future injury. I may go with 25%. Also, pitchers seem to compensate for the elbow giving out and another part of their arm gets hurt. deGrom’s health is ticking time bomb in my opinion.

• Some analysis I did a couple weeks ago on DL chances using pitch mixes was not my best work. For each of the categories, I listed the DL chances above a certain value, but I should have done a range of values. Of course, the overall value is going to be near the league average as more and more pitches are added to the sample. Here are the tables redone with ranges instead.

Pitch Mix DL Chances for Starters and Relievers
Pitch Mix DL chances in Y2 Scaled to 100 (or league average) Count
All Starters 51.00% 100 2320
FB% > 80% 63% 123 27
FB% between 70% & 80% 50% 98 259
FB% between 60% & 70% 53% 104 868
FB% between 50% & 60% 51% 100 845
FB% between 40% & 50% 43% 84 250
FB% between 20% & 40% 46% 90 52
SL% > 35% 47% 93 36
SL% between 30% & 35% 63% 123 64
SL% between 20% & 30% 50% 98 416
SL% between 10% & 20% 51% 99 812
SL% between 1% & 10% 50% 97 518
CB% > 30% 76% 148 41
CB% between 20% & 30% 47% 92 275
CB% between 10% & 20% 51% 99 860
CB% between 1% & 10% 47% 92 774
CB%+SL% > 40% 46% 90 65
CB%+SL% between 30% & 40% 52% 101 346
CB%+SL% between 20% & 30% 53% 104 748
CB%+SL% between 10% & 20% 46% 89 452
CB%+SL% between 1% & 10% 57% 112 56
CH% > 30% 49% 96 45
CH% between 20% and 30% 43% 85 294
CH% between 10% and 20% 48% 95 948
CH% between 1% and 10% 54% 106 918
Pitch Mix DL chances in Y2 Scaled to 100 (or league average) Count
All Relievers 37.00% 100 2916
FB% > 90% 40% 108 30
FB% between 80% & 90% 41% 111 177
FB% between 70% & 80% 39% 106 625
FB% between 60% & 70% 35% 95 991
FB% between 50% & 60% 38% 102 668
FB% between 40% & 50% 34% 92 290
FB% between 20% & 40% 37% 101 115
SL% > 50% 32% 85 57
SL% between 40% & 50% 43% 116 144
SL% between 30% & 40% 43% 115 422
SL% between 20% & 30% 34% 93 690
SL% between 10% & 20% 34% 93 727
SL% between 1% & 10% 37% 100 463
CB% > 30% 27% 73 74
CB% between 20% & 30% 31% 83 230
CB% between 10% & 20% 43% 115 458
CB% between 1% & 10% 37% 100 657
CB%+SL% > 50% 49% 132 45
CB%+SL% between 40% & 50% 43% 115 115
CB%+SL% between 30% & 40% 36% 97 366
CB%+SL% between 20% & 30% 35% 94 470
CB%+SL% between 10% & 20% 41% 110 336
CB%+SL% between 1% & 10% 49% 132 90
CH% > 30% 32% 88 77
CH% between 20% and 30% 34% 92 194
CH% between 10% and 20% 30% 81 512
CH% between 1% and 10% 38% 103 1427

Generally the same conclusions from before where too much of a single pitch will lead to health issues.

Player News

Gregory Bird will miss all of the 2016 season after having surgery to repair a torn labrum.

Yankees first baseman Greg Bird, who belted 11 homers in his first taste of big league action last year, will undergo surgery on Tuesday to repair a right shoulder labrum tear and is expected to miss the entire 2016 season.

The Yankees said that the injury is a reoccurrence of a right shoulder injury sustained in May, when Bird spent approximately a month on the disabled list with Double-A Trenton. He returned to the field after following a rest and rehab program.

General manager Brian Cashman said on Monday that Bird informed the Yankees after the season that the shoulder was again bothering him. At that time, Bird was evaluated by team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad as well as Dr. David Altchek, both of whom said that there appeared to be no change in the labrum tear from the early part of the season.

Mike Foltynewicz will likely start the season on the DL after having a blood clot removed last September.

A visibly thinner Foltynewicz seemed to be feeling good both physically and emotionally after he played long toss on Monday morning at Turner Field. The 24-year-old hurler will come to Spring Training a couple weeks behind with his throwing program, and he consequently could begin the regular season on the disabled list.

• The Mets are putting a return date of July 1st for Zack Wheeler.

Since undergoing surgery last March, Wheeler has spoken optimistically about returning as early as June. Though Wheeler may well be capable of that, the Mets leaned on data throughout Harvey’s rehab that demonstrated the benefits of taking 15 full months to work out the kinks. Wheeler’s 15-month anniversary will be June 25.

Ryan Braun may not be ready for the season’s start.

Ryan Braun is behind schedule in his recovery from offseason back surgery, but he said Sunday during “Brewers On Deck” that he remains hopeful about playing on Opening Day.

Braun underwent surgery in the week following the regular season to relieve a bulging disk in his lower back, and he was just cleared do rotational exercises two weeks ago. He did not begin swinging a bat until last week.

“I usually don’t start hitting until January, so I’m literally a couple weeks behind where I’d usually be,” Braun said. “But overall, I’m definitely encouraged by where I’m at.”

Stephen Vogt had surgery on his elbow and expects to be ready by opening day.

A’s catcher Stephen Vogt underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow Friday morning and is “fully expected to be ready by Opening Day,” the club stated in a release.

Vogt’s recovery time is estimated at 4-6 weeks, so it’s likely the backstop will be limited in activity during the early part of Spring Training. A’s pitchers and catchers are slated to report Feb. 20, with their first workout the following day.

Kyle Boddy at Driveline Baseball featured the story of Casey Weathers who struggled to be his old self after having Tommy John surgery.

On the training side, improving fastball velocity and pitching pain-free post-injury is a difficult mental journey. Casey specifically saw his pull-down velocity rise from the mid-90s to mid-100s, only to see his mound velocity not budge. It took an extra two months of training just to overcome the mental hurdles of “Will I throw strikes?” and “Will my arm hurt tomorrow?” in order to compete in Spring Training.

Players possibly on the DL in 2016

The Red players have had updates since the last report. Click on the “Date” for a link to go to the latest article on the player.





Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won three FSWA Awards including on for his MASH series. In his first two seasons in Tout Wars, he's won the H2H league and mixed auction league. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.

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Ryan Brock
Member
Member

Woah re: the 650 IP threshold. If 10% make it, and 15% get 2nd TJS… what happens to the other 75%? Out of baseball? Any idea how these results skew at the upper echelons of elite pitchers?

evo34
Member
evo34

Good point. The proper test is to look only at post-TJ pitchers who became studs, not all post-TJ picthers.